2016 Year In Review

A brief review of what the Star/Journal covered during 2016


The North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association, Farm Kids Fund and Bull Riders Canada brought the New Year in with a spectacular event at the North Thompson Agrilex featuring two long rounds of action at the fourth annual New Year’s Eve Bullarama and Dance.

The Barriere Senior Boys basketball team cruised through the Cougar Classic Championship tournament held at Barriere Secondary on Jan. 8 – 9.  The Barriere team was led by tournament All-Star Dustin Pawloff and tournament MVP Jacob Peterson.

Barriere Secondary grade 12 student Hanna Feller was named Rotary Student of the Month, and also received a Rotary Student Scholarship with a value of $250.  The scholarship recognizes outstanding leadership, strong academic and community/school involvement.

The Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society put out a notice to the community, hoping to find local kids to take part in the Society’s 2016 Summer Job Program.

Barriere Search and Rescue was one of two non-profit organizations dedicated to protecting the public who received a combined $27,000 from the province’s Community Gaming Grant program, with Barriere receiving $15,000, and Kamloops Search and Rescue receiving $12,000.

The Barriere and District Chamber of Commerce had a shock the week of January 14 when their website was compromised by cybersquatters grabbing the sites original domain name as it came up for renewal.  Chamber manager Marie Downing said they had requested their site be renewed automatically, but unfortunately this was not the case, and as a result, their domain name was immediately scooped and quickly became a very graphic and disgusting porn site which caused the Chamber to immediately go into damage control.  Their new website address is now: www.barrierechamberofcommerce.com.  The website was only out of commission for just over a day.

On Wednesday, Jan. 13, representatives from School District 73 and Thompson Rivers University toured Barriere’s Sustainable Waste Management Plant, accompainied by Mayor Virginia Smith, Councilor Al Fortin and District CAO Colleen Hannigan.  Area School District trustee Rhonda Kershaw said, “The group toured the facility to become familiar with the innovative practices and design being developed here in Barriere.”

A collision that happened just south of McLure on Sunday, Jan. 17, at approximately 1 p.m. resulted in a Clearwater man losing his life.  The driver, in a southbound Chery Lumina, apparently lost control on the wet and slushy highway, which resulted in crossing over into the path of a northbound commercial tractor trailer unit.  Forty-eight year old Antonino Cuthbert was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Thompson-Nicola Regional District Board of Directors approved expansion of the Dangerous Dog Control Bylaw to include Electoral Areas “j” (Copper Desert Country) and “O” (Lower North Thommpson) at a meeting on Jan. 21.  The bylaw is not breed-specific and does not discriminate against certain breeds.  According to the bylaw, a Dangerous Dog means any dog that:

(a) has killed or seriously injured a person,

(b) has killed or seriously injured a domestic animal in a public place or while on private property, other than property owned or occupied by the person responsible for the dog, or

(c) an Animal Control Officer has reasonable grounds to believe is likely to kill or seriously injure a person.

The Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society chose 11 recipients to receive grants from the organization, totalling $25,375.

The Barriere Legion Branch 242 gave back to the community once again on Jan. 19, when they handed out their annual grants in aid.  Receiving chequest of $1500 each were Barriere Search and Rescue, North Thompson Volunteer and Information Centre, Barriere Hospice, Barriere and District Food Bank, Barriere Soccer, and Barriere First Responders.



After years of fundraising and hard work, Barriere Search and Rescue are finally home in a brand new building on Barriere Town Road, moving in at the end of January.

The Feller family, Doreen Landry and Deb Young were all nominated for the 2015 Citizen of the Year.

The North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association handed over a cheque for just under $1000 to Farm Kids Fund president Steven Puhallo on Jan. 17 to go towards rural youth scholarships.  The money was a percentage of the profit from the New Year’s Eve Bullarama event held at the North Thompson Agriplex.

A total of $3,000 was raised at the Fire Relief Fundraiser for area resident Gilles Sequin on Feb. 7.  Bill Fowler organized the event to assist Sequin after his uninsured home was completely destroyed by fire Dec. 20.

The Little Stars Child Care program held in Barriere Ridge is proving to be a great assist for area parents, especially those who work as well as raise a family.

Glenda, Hannah and D’Arcey Feller were voted in as the 2015 Citizens of the Year.  The North Thompson Star/Journal annually sponsers the Barriere Citizen of the Year Award.

The District of Barriere was awarded a $4,836,735 dollar gas tax grant for 100 per cent funding of new twin production deep wells, a second reservoir for the south end of the existing distribution system and an upgrade to the main line between Bradford Road and Barriere Lakes Road.

A family rescued after skiing out of bounds at Sun Peaks Resort made a large donation to the organization that saved them.  Kamloops Search and Rescue manager Alan Hobler would only say the donation was a sizable amount that would cover the cost of the rescue and help purchase much needed equipment.

About 30 youngsters from Barriere joined 75 from Raft River and 10 from Blue River for the annual Andy Aufschnaiter Memorial cross-country ski races held in Blue River, Feb. 18

Heather Adamson, B. Ed., Early Years Community Development Coordinator announced they were successful in their application to acquire Early Years Centre annual funding through the Provincial Office for the Early Years to support their existing and future development of services for the zero to six years population and their families.  The funds will be used for the Success By 6 and Make Children First initiatives embedded within the current partnerships and efforts of the existing Early Years collaboratives in Clearwater and Barriere.

Long time Barriere resident, Eva Long, shared a photo of a recent get together in the community with her family celebrating five generations all in one place.

The Barriere Volunteer Fire Department was called out to a structure fire around 12:30 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 21, at 725 Barriere Lakes Road.  The occupants safely evacuated along with their pets, but the home was fully engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived.


MARCH 2016

Barriere Senior girls returned from the West Zone Championships with a come from behind victory over rivals St. Ann’s, winning and capturing the West Zone Championships and securing them an excellent ranking heading into the Okanagan Valley Championships.

Cpl. Steve Mancini from the Barriere RCMP Detachment reported property crime was up in the Southeast District.  Mancini said law enforcement believed there were at least two groups out there that police are trying to get tabs on.  He encouraged area residents to be diligent with their possessions.

“Suddenly Able’, a local rock cover band, volunteered live music for a dance Feb. 27 at the Barriere Legiion to fundraise for the Splash Pad project in the community.  The dance raised $1,151 for the project.

Colleen Hannigan was elected to the position of chair at the Lower North Thompson Tourism Society’s (LNTTS) annual general meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 17.  The LNTTS promotes marketing of the area through website, social media, consumer shows and other initiatives.

Yellowhead 4-H Club Speech Day was on Feb. 21, at the Barriere Lions Hall.  There were 37 speeches in all, and the topics included: Internet Safety,  My Family, Lego, and Sleep.

Local first time author, Eleanor Deckert held a book signing Saturday, Mar. 12 at Chapters in Kamloops.  Her book “10 Days in December…where dreams meet reality…” journals the first 10 days she and her husband, Kevin lived in their tiny, uninsulated one-room log cabin.

Highlights from the Mar. 7, District of Barriere Budget and Council meeting included the announcement that Municipal Property Taxes were going up by five per cent.

The District of Barriere and the Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society announced the BC Labour Heritage Society was inviting communities around the province to participate in Remembering Working People: Plaques around the Province Project.  The District of Barriere agreed to participate in the project by erecting a plaque commemorating workers in the logging and forest industry who have been injured, lost their lives, or whose health has been severely compromised by their work environment.  The plaque was to be mounted on the wing wall of the Barriere Bandshell, adjacent to the 100th Anniversary Legacy Placque for Barriere in Fadear Park, on the National Day of Mourning Ceremony to be held on Apr. 28.

Eight students from Barriere Secondary School competed successfully in the Cariboo Skills Competitions at Thompson Rivers University on Mar. 4.  Four of the students returned with awards for their efforts.

An art show in Kamloops included works of several North Thompson artists, the majority of them from Barriere.  The show ran from Mar. 10-19, showing more than 200 works in all media from 140 artists.

The Barriere Curling Club welcomed 16 teams to their Annual Loggers Bonspiel in March; eight teams from out of town, and eight teams from Barriere.

The Barriere Secondary Senior Girls Basketball Team brought home a well earned sixth place finish at the ‘A’ Senior Girls Basket all Provincials held in Duncan, B.C., Mar. 8-12.

The team played well in the tournament, winning two of their four games and losing by only one point in their final game.

It was reported snowpacks in the South and North Thompson watersheds were slightly above normal, with 80 per cent of snowfall complete for the season.

Thompson Nicola Regional District Director Bill Kershaw thanked those who contributed to building the Agate Bay boat launch.

District of Barriere council approved the recommendation from staff, “That council direct staff to issue an RFP (Request For Proposals) for the materials and installation of a splash pad in Lot 36, Plan 1746 of Fadear Park.”

The District of Barriere approved the expenditure of up to $200,000 from the Solar Aquatics Wastewater Project’s holdback funds and from Gas Tax reserves to enable work to continue moving ahead, so that the project can be up and running by June.

North Thompson Women In Business announced they would be hosting their first annual Business Expo on Apr. 2 in Clearwater, at the Clearwater Lodge.  Numerous businesses from the North Thompson Valley were expected to participate.

Barriere’s Greenhouse Think Tank Committee explored the benefits and feasibility of forming an agri-business-based co-op as a potential revenue stream for the Solar Aquatics System and Ecology Centre behind the Barriere Fire Hall.  The District of Barriere announced they plan to grow pond plants of various varieties in some of the tanks, the majority of which will be marketable.

Simpcw First Nation hosted a two-day trail building workshop with the Riding Turtle Island series (a collaborative project between Tree Meter Productions and the Aboriginal Youth Mountain Program) which included people from throughout the region and from as far away as Valemount and Vancouver.

D’N’B Rodeo Stock announced the True Grit rodeo would be back, Apr. 9 at the North Thompson Agriplex and would be called True Grit Big Five,

Members of the Russian women’s hockey team were in Clearwater at the end of March for four days of training and preparation for the world championships in Kamloops.

The North Thompson Agriplex in Barriere saw 658 BC Team Cattle Penning Association teams compete for $60,000 in prize money at the end of March. The two day competition was filled with no-stop action while 110 riders from all over B.C. competed to see who would take the biggest purse home.


Continued next week…